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Defining mindfulness by how poorly I think I pay attention during everyday awareness and other intractable problems for psychology's (re)invention of mindfulness : comment on Brown et al.

Grossman, Paul. (2011) Defining mindfulness by how poorly I think I pay attention during everyday awareness and other intractable problems for psychology's (re)invention of mindfulness : comment on Brown et al. Psychological assessment, Vol. 23, H. 4 , S. 1034-1040 ; discussion 1041-1046.

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Official URL: http://edoc.unibas.ch/dok/A6003340

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Abstract

The Buddhist construct of mindfulness is a central element of mindfulness-based interventions and derives from an age-old systematic phenomenological program to investigate subjective experience. Recent enthusiasm for "mindfulness" in psychology has resulted in proliferation of self-report inventories that purport to measure mindful awareness as a trait. This paper addresses a number of intractable issues regarding these scales, in general, and also specifically highlights vulnerabilities of the adult and adolescent forms of the Mindfulness Attention Awareness Scale. These problems include (a) lack of available external referents for determining the construct validity of these inventories, (b) inadequacy of content validity of measures, (c) lack of evidence that self-reports of mindfulness competencies correspond to actual behavior and evidence that they do not, (d) lack of convergent validity among different mindfulness scales, (e) inequivalence of semantic item interpretation among different groups, (f) response biases related to degree of experience with mindfulness practice, (g) conflation of perceived mindfulness competencies with valuations of importance or meaningfulness, and (h) inappropriateness of samples employed to validate questionnaires. Current self-report attempts to measure mindfulness may serve to denature, distort, and banalize the meaning of mindful awareness in psychological research and may adversely affect further development of mindfulness-based interventions. Opportunities to enrich positivist Western psychological paradigms with a detailed and complex Buddhist phenomenology of the mind are likely to require a depth of understanding of mindfulness that, in turn, depends upon direct and long-term experience with mindfulness practice. Psychologists should consider pursuing this avenue before attempting to characterize and quantify mindfulness.
Faculties and Departments:03 Faculty of Medicine > Bereich Medizinische Fächer (Klinik) > Psychosomatik
03 Faculty of Medicine > Departement Klinische Forschung > Bereich Medizinische Fächer (Klinik) > Psychosomatik
UniBasel Contributors:Grossmann, Paul
Item Type:Article, refereed
Article Subtype:Research Article
Bibsysno:Link to catalogue
Publisher:American Psychological Association
ISSN:1040-3590
Note:Publication type according to Uni Basel Research Database: Journal article
Identification Number:
Last Modified:25 Oct 2013 08:32
Deposited On:25 Oct 2013 08:32

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